Have trouble sleeping? How often do you remember your dreams? Supposedly, about 25% of the time you spend snoozing you are in the state of sleep (REM) that lets you dream. Apparently the average adult has between 4 and 6 dreams each night. That means if you sleep eight hours, about two hours of dream time. I always thought it was so interesting how some people could remember all of their dreams in vivid detail, and others couldn’t remember any.
I’m not a scientist so I could be wrong, but I did a lot of curiosity-driven research over the years and have a few things in mind. In my search I had come across an article that said some people don’t remember their dreams because they aren’t interested in them. Kind of like flipping through tv stations and not catching anything worth leaving on. Your subconscious is taking all your thoughts and observations from the day and turning them into something for your sleeping pleasure – and your bored of it!
I have noticed during the times when I don’t remember my dreams that I’m in a bit of a rut. It could be a time when I have felt stagnant in my career, distant from some friends, or anything that left me in a feeling of longing. I also noticed it when I am very stressed or feeling overwhelmed. Very natural life events, right? Stagnant at work -well how many people are inspired on their nine to five? Distant from friends – they moved and had kids. Whatever the case, we all end up in the rut at some point and even if you don’t notice it consciously, subconsciously your mind is letting you know it’s turning off and it isn’t getting what it wants. Even your subconscious is ready to go through the motions if you aren’t willing to do what it takes to pull yourself out of it. What I’m saying is that if you can’t remember your dreams, its possible that you aren’t tuning in while you’re awake either. Kind of makes sense, I’ve been there before.
“I have a dream to start my own business.”
“I have a dream to open a bakery.”
“I always had this dream to write a book.”
It’s as much a literal sense as it is to figure of speech. What do you need to feel creative or inspired? Your subconscious needs the exact same thing. Maybe you are the type of person that likes to try new things – a strange food or restaurant, hang gliding, making friends from strangers? Maybe you need solitude – a hike, camping or fishing trip? Or maybe you are someone who needs your heart rate up – roller coasters, action movies, exercise? Whatever you like to do there is no reason not to do it, only an excuse. You owe is to yourself to make time for things you like to do. Plan it out if you have to, make sure you keep that date with yourself.
What has always helped me is talking it up. A friend says ‘what are you doing this weekend?’ – ‘i’m going for a long hike to take some nature photos’ or ‘i’m going to six flags and i don’t care how cold it is’. You might be surprised about how your passion into things you like could inspire it in others. Can you guess how many people have played dungeons and dragons for hundreds of hours because I had a love for the game? Many – and I married the best player.
Now I know there is a laundry list of responsibilities that can get in the way of doing everything you want to do and that’s okay. Everything in life is a balance, work and play. Too often I find myself and others sacrificing themselves for the sake of duties. On behalf of the world around you, we want you happy and empowered. Passionate and inspired. Let’s jump back into what makes you feel alive and take the time for you. Do that from time to time and I promise it’ll become second nature – and your dreams will be directed by Hitchcock himself.